What I Read December 2021

by - January 05, 2022


I feel like I ended December on a pretty good note. I finished three series and discovered two new ones. I also read the first books of two series I will not be continuing for various reasons, but we'll get to that later.

So here are the 10 books I read in the last month of 2021. Let's dive in!


Conquer (Shades of Trouble 4)
Author: Kitty Cox

Everything comes to a head in this book, but I can't really give you any details without spoiling the books before it! So, brief overall series synopsis: Violet has returned to her childhood home with plans of restoring it to its former glory as a youth diversion center. With the help of her 'rainbow'  - former Southwind attendees who all went on to become successful members of society - Violet is getting closer to her goal, but there's one vocal naysayer who's cowed the small Texas community into doing his bidding.

This was a great way to end this series. One small thing, though. I feel like they could have lost a few of the sex scenes. Although they didn't distract from the plot, they also weren't really advancing the story, and I kind of skimmed through them.

I'm excited that the author has plans to do books with some of the other characters from this series. I've got my fingers crossed for some more crossover into the Gamer Girls series!


Author: Amy Matayo 

In an attempt to salvage her grade in the one class she needs to graduate, Bree starts her very own Ghost Club like the one Charles Dickens had in the 1800s. When she finds an original copy of one of Dickens' works, she's transported right into the middle of a meeting of the original Ghost Club. There, she meets Theodore, a doctor from the mid-1900s who's also been trapped in the past. Together, the two begin searching for the manuscript, but they're up against the clock.

I loved the idea of this book. The execution, however, could have been better. The editing wasn't the best in the world, either. It was definitely not the worst-edited book I’ve read, but there were enough editing issues that it was distracting.


The Price We Pay (The Path of Temptation 1)
Author: Auryn Hadley

I'm not going to continue with this series. As much as I really like the author, I’m not comfortable with the premise of the plot for this one.

Nari has been claimed by the God of Temptation. In this book, she's taken under the wing of the High Priestess while she attends classes to choose her path of service. Essentially, she's a child who's being groomed to possibly become a sex worker, and while I don't have any issues with adults who choose that path in life, I do have an issue with a child being groomed for it. So, yeah. This series, despite its five-star rating, is not for me.


Author: Peppa Grant

This is the last book of the Bluewater Billionaires collection. This one focuses on Daisy, heir to her family's real estate empire, and West, former Marine turned contractor. The two are thrown together when Daisy's cousin and her husband unexpectedly die and name Daisy and West as their baby's guardians.

This book has a lot of fun banter. Daisy is by far the craziest of the four friends featured in this series, but she's also a hard worker who's trying to impress her formidable grandmother, aptly nicknamed The Dame. The cats were an unexpectedly funny side story.

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Author: Jarica James

The third book of the Spirit Vlog series was almost too creepy for me. It's shorter than the first two books, but has a good bit more spookiness. Brea and the guys buy an old mansion that turns out to have a seedy past. And Brea’s “number one fan” is escalating. We also meet Lincoln’s parents in this book.

Then in book four, the gang heads out to investigate an abandoned mining town, infamous for a string of murders that shut it down. While there, the ghost hunters uncover the truth of what really happened in the town and have their final confrontation with Brea's 'number one fan,' thus ending the first season of this series.

I think I've said this before, but this series is a fun little supernatural mystery. My husband and I like to watch Ghost Adventures when we can, and these books have a lot of the same vibes, plus a real-life stalker.


Subversive (Clandestine Magic book 1)
Author: Colleen Cowley 

When Peter Blackwell returns to his hometown and presses Beatrix Harper into service as his apprentice, she fears he's working to undermine the Women's League for the Prohibition of Magic - an organization her sister has set her sights on one day leading. But Peter's real purpose is something far more dangerous.

This was not a bad start to a series. It has a bit of a Paper Magician feel to it, which is one of my absolute most favorite series ever.


Perfection of Suffering (The Shadows of Wildberry Lane book 1)
Author: M. Sinclair

Honestly, I'm not really sure how this book is as highly rated as it is. It was recommended in one of the book groups I'm involved with on Facebook, so I figured I'd give it a try. Dahlia is the adopted daughter of a rich couple that lives in a gated community in a southern town. She's surrounded by a group of boys who go out of their way to protect her from everything, but she's been hiding the fact that she's being bullied almost constantly. All of their families are apparently involved in some illegal activities, too. Dahlia, herself, is ridiculously naïve, to the point of being annoying. There's also an overabundance of pointless descriptions of literally everything throughout the book and a lot of flashbacks that seem to have no bearing on the present. So yeah, I won't be continuing this series either.


Asterion (Court of the Underworld Book 1)
Author: Alessa Thorn

An assassin looking to escape her indentured servitude to her master accepts a job outside of her temple, but it turns out her target is none other than the Minotaur of legend. Despite their immediate connection, she follows through with the job, then goes on the run. Turns out, the Minotaur isn't so easy to kill, and he's an excellent tracker, and there's something much larger at play here.

I really enjoyed this book and am excited to read the next, which focuses on Medusa.


Author: Alix E. Harrow

This is a Sleeping Beauty retelling. Zinnia is terminally ill and in the last weeks of her life when she is transported into an alternate reality/parallel universe. There, she meets Primrose, who's been cursed to prick her finger on a spinning wheel and sleep for a century. Together, Zinnia and Primrose set off to find the fairy behind the curse in the hopes she'll lift it, as well as cure Zinnia and send her home. The fairy, however, is unable to do any of that, leaving the girls to save themselves.

This is definitely a book that was written for younger audiences, but I don't really let that stop me. This is the first Sleeping Beauty retelling I've read, so I don't have anything else to compare it to. The parallel universe idea was a new one for me, too, and at the risk of spoiling something, I just have to say that the idea of Zinnia's cell phone still working while she was in that other world kind of blew my mind.

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